Since its Thursday, this is a throwback to about six years ago when my first daughter, around a year and a half old, was an only child. If you happen to have a highly energetic grandmother or relative, you might be able to relate. As much effort as it was mentally to visit my Grandma, me the slothful type in contrast to Grandma Turner, the high-speed European train type, I’d do it all over again 7,000 times if I could!
As soon as Sammy and I arrive at Grandma Turner’s house, my ninety-one-year-old Grandma opens the door and shrieks, “Sammy! How ya doin?! Come ‘ere lookit what I got you. It’s a little Sammy seat!” Sweet Grams thought it would be nice to have a Sammy – sized “chair” at her house. Well I don’t know if she intended it to be a high chair or what. It was a booster seat for the kitchen table and it was missing some important security straps. The straps which would have secured it to a kitchen table chair. But it was a steal at $6, apparently. I mustered an energetic “thank you!” as Grandma interrupted me and slightly elbowed me out of the way to take Sammy to see something in another room. I took the opportunity to set the new chair on the sturdy floor.
Next grandma spent about one minute forty-five seconds playing with Sammy before she had to go tend to lunch. In a flash, she opened up about three or four cans of fruit, poured them into separate bowls and then started to take the fruit out and slice it. Then she called me in to “fix the salad.” Since we are from Georgia and eat Southern things and since my Grandma is old and fixes old-timey things, you never know what “salad” she means – sometimes it is Jello with the fruit conjealed inside; usually it is a piece of iceberg lettuce with mayonaise and a pear on top. Only once was it a green lettuce garden salad. But today apparently it was fruit salad.
Later on Grandma ordered me to take a nap. So I sat there in my spot on the sofa while she and Sammy went to the other room (listening closely, of course, because Grandma thinks she can pick Sammy up and carry her around the house which she really cannot because she is ninety-one! And my child is heavy!) Apparently they had a blast playing dominoes.
Done with my “nap,” I look up to see Sammy toddle into the living room dress-less. Apparently she had gotten “applepauce” on it. It was time to change Sammy’s diaper, during which she took the opportunity to rip off her leggings due to the sweltering heat of the 79 degree house. We were absurdly dressed for cold weather since it was February and all. Despite being almost completely naked, the girl had pink cheeks from getting so warm playing inside Great Grandma’s balmy house! Lordy, i was a-sweatin’ too! And I was only wearing 3/4 sleeves.
Finally it was nearing 2:00 which is always an excuse to leave to beat the traffic. But add to that the three hours of non-stop high pitched jammering from both my loving daughter and dear grandma and that was enough for me! Example: imagine this conversation happening simultaneously!
Sammy: Where basketball go?
Grandma: COME ‘ERE HON. GIVE G-GRAMS A HUG!
Sammy: I want horsie
Grandma: (to me) YOU WANT THIS PURSE? YOU GOT A GOODWILL PLACE YOU CAN TAKE IT TO?
(Grams throws purse at me, then puts it on the table. Sammy sees it and wants it.)
Sammy: I want purse!
Grandma: YOU WANT YOUR MILK?
Me in my head: Jesus Pete! It is time to get the hell out of here!
I change Sammy’s diaper and she is trying to kick me in the stomach and laugh about it.
Me: Stop it, Sammy. Calm down.
Grandma: COME ‘ERE HON, COME GIVE GRANMA A HUG!
Sammy yelps for joy, kicks me again and throws her body into the sofa and Grandma. I cringe hoping that Sammy’s gigantic toddler head doesn’t injure Grandma’s fragile bones.
Me in my head: I. Am. So. Done.
And then with my car already packed full of Sammy’s snacks, toys, books, and the loot from Grandma which included brownies, Wal-mart crackers she didn’t want, pillow cases, a lasagna, the goodwill purse, and (sure to be stale) store-bought cookies, Grandma asked if we wanted a sack to put the damn basketball in to “take to Daddy.” I say no because our car is full already and I need both hands to take my purse, Sammy, her shoes, her dolly and her water sippy cup and add that it would be fun to come back and play with the basketball next time. To which Grandma replies, as she has every Thanksgiving for the last thirteen years, “I might not be here next time.”
(Insert appropriately perplexed, sweaty, fatigued, slightly agitated emoticon here!)
And off we went, in pure Griswold form, simultaneously waving, shouting good-bye, thank-you, love you, see you soon. (Insert heart and smiley face emoticon here.)